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Cell Cycle. 2004 Jan;3(1):61-3.

Why do cells require heat shock proteins to survive heat stress?

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Department of Biochemistry, Sciences II, 30 quai E. Ansermet, CH-1211 Geneva 4, Switzerland.


The cellular response to heat stress includes the induction of a group of proteins called the Heat Shock Proteins, whose functions include the synthesis of the thermoprotectant trehalose, refolding of denatured proteins, and ubiquitin- and proteasome-dependent degradation. Recent studies show that simply increasing the activity of ubiquitin- and proteasome-dependent degradation can replace the essential functions played by the induction of heat shock proteins during a heat stress. These results suggest that accumulation of denatured or aggregated proteins is the reason for the loss of cell viability due to heat stress.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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